The amended Electoral Code now requires the sponsorship of presidential candidates. Civil society sees this as an attempt at exclusion that can be a source of tension.
Souleyman Kotto-Yérima of civil society did not go in four directions to demonstrate how the sponsorship of presidential candidates is a means of exclusion that has nothing to do with the reform of the partisan system and the vitality of the political class. He argues that what is done by MPs is very restrictive and carries with it the seeds of an electoral crisis. The mayor, he will say, is not a direct elected representative of the population. He is elected by the local or municipal councillors. Better still, he comes from the party with the majority in the commune. So, “imagine that as in the past (with the FCEB), the current government takes the majority of the town halls (60 out of 77) for example in the 2020 elections, there will only be 17 mayors left to sponsor the candidates”, he points out.
Although he perceives an advantage of the reform, he fears the disadvantages. “This measure certainly solves the problem of plethora of candidates for the supreme judiciary, but honestly, it leaves room for corruption of the electorate in one way or another and does not necessarily make the right President, who is sufficiently representative of the people, have the right President,” the civil society actor stressed. And to avoid “strengthening the conditions of candidacy and excluding potential uncontrollable candidates”, it is preferable, for Souleyman Kotto-Yérim “to require that any candidate for the position of President of the Republic and VP (therefore the duo) be supported by a political party with an additional requirement that the latter be a member of the party for a number of years (to be studied)”.